Friday, December 24, 2010

Movie Review: TEES MAAR KHAN

Well Well Well .... the biggest entertainer of the year released today to a thunderous applause. It's been three years since Farah Khan's last outing 'Om Shanti Om' released and broke all existing box office records, so it was expected from Farah to deliver another BLOCKBUSTER with or without Shah Rukh Khan. 'TEES MAAR KHAN' is a very risky attempt taken by Farah as heist movies need a lot of detailing in stunts and a good execution. A territory by far dominated by male directors, Farah has tried to attempt it well and surprise of surprise she has acheived it to a greater extent. Let me also inform you that TEES MAAR KHAN is a straight lift of Peter Sellers' 1966 Italian film AFTER THE FOX [CACCIA ALLA VOLPE] with little changes to adjust to Indian audience.

Tees Maar Khan [Akshay Kumar] is the story of a con man who steals, cons and cheats all with such alarming audacity that even shame shies away from him. He and his gang comprising of Dollar, Soda and Burger have managed to keep the police, world over, on their toes.

Then one fine day international antique smugglers, the Johri Brothers, assign Tees Maar Khan the biggest con job of his life. He must rob antiques worth Rs. 500 crores from a heavily-guarded moving train. Will Khan and his gang, with some unwitting support from his wannabe-actress girlfriend Anya [Katrina Kaif] and the Oscar-greedy Bollywood superstar [Akshaye Khanna], be able to pull off this heist?

TEES MAAR KHAN is a joyride and like all Farah Khan movies in the past is a brainless comedy with full too paisa vasool timepass entertainment. TEES MAAR KHAN like her previous films will see a big divide in opinion as the masses will admire it, while the critics will go mad criticizing it. As a movie TEES MAAR KHAN worked in parts for me.

The story screenplay by Ashmith and Shirish Kunder is fast paced and develops the entire premise of the movie in quick succession. The dialogues are good in parts and the comic antics by the leading and supporting cast is good enough. Akshaye Khanna is a dream to watch as the movie helps him to explore his comic act. Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif are good and so are the Apra Mehta who play Akshay Kumar's mother, Sudhir Pandey, Aarya Babbar and the three side kicks of Akshay.

Barring 'Sheila Ki Jawani' the music by Vishal - Shekhar falls flat. Salman Khan's item number with Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif is a must watch. Cinematography by P.S. Vinod is superb and so is the background score by Shirish Kunder.

On the whole TEES MAAR KHAN is an average entertainer that might make good money in the first week due to the heavy promotions and ofcourse 'Sheila Ki Jawani'.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Preview: Toonpur Ka Superhero

This Christmas season Bollywood sees three big movies coming from three prestigious banners. Tees Maar Khan from Farah Khan's production house after Om Shanti Om, Toonpur Ka Superrhero from Ajay Devgn and Kumar Mangat's production house and Isi Life Mein from Sooraj Badjatya's Rajshri banner. However among all three movies, one movie that stands out is Toonpur Ka Superrhero as it is India’s first motion picture that combines animation with live action and also promises a lot of fun for kids during this Christmas.

The film stars Ajay Devgan and Kajol in lead roles. The movie is conceived and directed by Kireet Khurana and has music by Anu Malik.

Aditya (Ajay Devgan), a film superstar, and his wife Priya (Kajol) have achieved all the success they have dreamed of. But their children (played by Amey Pandya and Chinky Jaiswal) would rather have a father who is a real life hero, not just a reel hero.

Aditya wants to redeem himself in the eyes of the children when suddenly the opportunity comes knocking on his door and he finds himself in Toonpur.

Toonpur is the land of his children’s favourite cartoons, where he has to fight the toonasaurs (bad toons) to save the Devtoons (good toons).

Aditya meets a number of toon characters like the sexy Loveena, the music freak Guppy, the geeky Lappy, the sagacious Gyaandev, the big fat Beegben, the constable Pandu and a kid named Bolly.

Produced by Kumar Mangat and Krishika Lulla, Toonpur Ka Superrhero is set to release on December 24.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Movie Review: KAALO

There was a time when Ramsay Brothers were the only production house that churned out horror flicks until Ram Gopal Verma and Vikram Bhatt took the mantle. Joining Vikram Bhatt and Ram Gopal Varma is director Wilson Louis who only specializes in horror genre. Wilson Louis had earlier attempted two movie 'Ho Sakta Hai' and 'Mallika' before he made 'Kaalo' a day horror movie which till date no one has attempted in India.

The story is of a witch named Kaalo who lived in Kulbhata during the 18th century. She was killed and buried by angry villagers for sacrificing young girls to satisfy her greed for immortality, but her fear lived on. Years later, villagers spoke of Kaalo's sightings yet again. They claimed she was even more angry and dangerous and she was back to finish what she left incomplete. Kulbhata was vacated overnight by scared villagers.

All roads leading to Kulbhata were sealed by horrifying tales of Kaalo killing anyone who dared to enter Kulbhata. Until a bus carrying a few passengers on its way to Kuldevi had to pass through Kulbhata. One of the passengers on the bus was a twelve-year-old girl named Shona [Swini Khara], who is traveling alone to spend her vacation at her grandmother's house in the neighboring village.

During the course of the journey, Shona and co-passenger Sameer [Aditya Shrivastav] strike a rapport. Sameer is traveling with a bag loaded with gun powder to blast a small hillock, which would give way to a water canal for his drought-hit village. Badly disfigured and thirsty for blood, Kaalo could smell the girl from miles away... and heads straight for the bus. When the passengers realize they were staring into death, everything changes. They realize Shona is their reason for dying. Everyone wants her out of the bus, except Sameer.

The movie sounds very good on the story board however the execution is very bad however the camera work by Pushpank Gawde is very good so is the visual effect. At times the movies seems to be stretched out and that slackens the pace of the movie and also the end of the movie is not at all convincing. The creature has supernatural powers, yet combats Aditya Shrivastav like a mortal. Being a horror movie one expects chilling and thrilling moments in the movie however we find none.

Director Wilson Louis like his earlier ventures delivers another half baked movie which leaves a lot to be desired. In comparison to this movie RGV's movies are classics. Wilson Louis needs to go back to film making school and learn the nitty gritties of directing.

Speaking of performances, Aditya Shrivastav does well. Swini Khara doesn't get ample scope. Amongst the passengers in the bus, Abhijeet Satam, Aditya Lakhia and Raj Arjun register the maximum impact. Prashant Kumar is alright. Paintal and Sheela Sharma are perfect. Hemant Pandey is adequate.
Overall a very bad effort which will be soon forgotten by the viewers and another box office dud to the ever mounting pile of flops seen in the last few weeks.

Thursday, December 16, 2010


Hello Friends,

KNOCKED UP my debut novel has been doing extremely well in the market and to celebrate that Reliance Timeout and Magic Moments organized an event in Mumbai. I am very happy for the fact that all those people who mattered to me made it to the event and made it a success.

The event started late by 30 minutes as I was caught up in traffic while coming to Mumbai, however the fun we had during the event was awesome. Mr. Radhakrishnan Pillai the author of 'Corporate Chanakya' unveiled 'Knocked Up' to the gathered crowd of friends. My dear friends Pushtiie (Mahi of Mahi Way), Rishi Bhutani (Bolo Raam fame), Sundeep Malani (Director) and Aditya Kripalani alongwith Praveen, Mohit, Jasmin, Sonia (BookChums) were there to cheer me.

The question answer session conducted by Mr. Pillai was entertaining and everyone associated with KNOCKED UP was given a chance to give their precious thoughts about the book and the book making process. Few of my other friends who couldn't make up for the event due to traffic jam like Anand Kumar (Director), Aseem Tiwari, Amish (The Immortals of Meluha), Devansh Patel etc sent their wishes and were constantly present on the phone checking the progress of the event.

It was a fun evening and I will always remember it....thank you friends for making my day special :)

With loads of Love
Shaiju Mathew

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Movie Review: NO PROBLEM

No Entry, Welcome, Singh Is King - three blockbusters in a row and all three movies shared the same director - Anees Bazmee. Yes, Anees Bazmee the man behind several hit movies as a story writer and also as a director comes out with his latest comical outing 'No Problem'.

No Problem unlike his earlier outings is a non-starter from the word go. Anees Bazmee movies are always high on laughter quotient and although they are mindless comedies they always are highly enjoyable. However 'No Problem' doesn't live upto the expectations and is a total disaster for the viewer.

The story is about Yash [Sanjay Dutt] and Raj [Akshaye Khanna] who are small-time crooks and childhood buddies. Raj wants to lead an honest life, but Yash always manages to do something that jeopardizes Raj's chances of turning over a new leaf. When Yash robs the First Village Bank, the innocent bank manager, Zandulal [Paresh Rawal], also falls under suspicion, just because he had sheltered Yash and Raj under his roof.

In Durban, Arjun [Anil Kapoor] is a bungling cop, married to Kajal [Sushmita Sen], the daughter of the Commissioner of Police [Shakti Kapoor]. Kajal has a split personality - one moment she's a loving wife and mother, who, for 10 minutes every day, transforms into a terrifying maniac intent on murdering her husband.
Diamonds worth millions have been stolen from the International Diamond Centre by the gang lead by Marcos [Suniel Shetty]. Arjun is as determined to find these ruthless robbers, as Zandulal is to find the two crooks who robbed his bank. Yash and Raj try to avoid Zandulal, who does not realize that they are his neighbours.

Meanwhile, Raj falls in love with Sanjana [Kangna Ranaut], Kajal's younger sister. But just before the engagement, Zandulal threatens to expose Yash and Raj unless they return the money they stole from his bank. Cornered, Raj and Yash agree to commit one last robbery. They rob a minister's house, minutes before Marcos arrives. The minister is tortured and killed, because Marcos cannot find the stolen diamonds.

Now starts a game of hide and seek, as Arjun goes after Yash and Raj, the prime suspects in the minister's murder and Marcos also hunts them down because he's figured out that they have the diamonds. Yash and Raj must prove their innocence and also somehow or the other pay back Zandulal.

The movie is entertaining in bits and parts and among the principle characters Sanjay Dutt does a decent job. Kangana and Sushmita are plainly wasted whereas Akshaye, Suniel Shetty and Anil Kapoor doesn't get much scope to showcase their acting chops.
On the whole NO PROBLEM will pose a big PROBLEM to its investors as the box office results for this movie seems to be bleak. Another disaster in the making.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Review: Band Baaja Baarat

After the debacles witnessed in the past few weeks, this week opened with two big banner movies. Yash Raj's Band Baaja Baarat with Anushka Sharma and newcomer Ranveer Singh based on Indian Weddings and Wedding Planners.

The story, Shruti [Anushka Sharma] is a 20-something no-nonsense girl from a middle class Delhi household. Focused and determined with pre-planned ambitions, her goals in life are well laid out by the time she reaches her final year of college. Bittoo [Ranveer Singh], on the other hand, has no real aim in life. As a final year college student of Delhi University, he whiles away his life having fun with his buddies.
A chance and inopportune meeting brings the two of them together on a tumultuous journey where they become partners in their very own, "Wedding planning ka bijness." The rules, however, are clear: "Jisse vyapaar karo, usse kabhi na pyaar karo" [Don't mix business with pleasure]. Together, their friendship and business enters the ups and downs of the lavish Delhi weddings. And while trying to find themselves, Shruti and Bittoo discover each other and realize that they are made for each other.

The story is simple but the dialogues and screenplay does the trick. The Delhi lingo earlier explored by Habib Faisal in his own directorial debut 'Do Dooni Chaar' has been reused keeping in mind the movie is based in Delhi. Debutant director Maneesh Sharma, who earlier worked on FANAA, AAJA NACHLE and RAB NE BANA DI JODI, makes a confident debut with BAND BAAJA BAARAAT. Sharma narrates a quintessential Delhi tale most effectively. BAND BAAJA BAARAAT would've lost the plot had it been entrusted to a lesser talent. BAND BAAJA BAARAAT also captures the Delhi flavour diligently. In fact, Aseem Mishra's cinematography captures the North Indian ambience with precision.

Music by Salim-Suleiman is decent and so is the background music. Actingwise both Anushka and Ranveer do an excellent job. The supporting cast also give an able support especially Neeraj Sood [as Maqsoodbhai], who's excellent. Manmeet Singh Sawhney [as Rajinder] is good, while Manish Chaudhari [as Mr. Sidhwani] is first-rate.

Overall the movie is a delightful fare and on the box office it will be a winner eventhough it would start off slowly.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Year 2010 : Fall of the Titans!!!

2010 will always be remembered in Bollywood history as the year where most of the big directors failed to hit gold with their movies. Lets take a look at these high profile directors and their turkey's.

VEER: The year started with VEER, an ambitious project for both Salman Khan and Anil Sharma. Anil Sharma is one director who gave the biggest blockbuster of Indian Movie History 'GADAR- Ek Prem Katha' and he also gave other successful movies in the past like 'HERO- A lovestory of a Spy', 'Apne' etc. The movie was mounted on a huge budget however the costumer drama fell flat on the face incurring huge losses for the producers and distributors.

KITES: Rakesh Roshan, Rajesh Roshan and Hrithik Roshan always spell box office magic. So when 'Kites' was announced it was one of the most anticipated movie of the year. The movie had created a lot of noise because it was a movie that also boasted of starring Mexican Superstar Barbara Mori and also because of the rumours of Hrithik - Barbara love story. For the first time Hrithik was directed by Anurag Basu instead of Rakesh Roshan in their home production financed by Reliance. There was nothing interesting in the movie or in the treatment, this 125 crore extravaganza burnt a huge hole in the pockets of Reliance BIG Cinemas making it one of the biggest disasters in the history of Indian Movies.

RAAVAN: Master-Blaster director Mani Rathnam who always commanded respect and critical acclaim for all his past movies had to take a lot of flak for his latest offering 'RAAVAN' starring Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. AR Rahman who always gave chartbursting music in every Mani movie gave a mediocre score for RAAVAN which added to the losses. The movie was made on a lavish scale at the cost of 100 crore plus however it was another money loser for Reliance BIG Cinemas and Mani Rathnam.

ACTION REPLAY: Vipul Shah has always had an enviable box office track record with three blockbusters 'Aankhen', 'Waqt' & 'Namaste London' as director and 'Singh Is King' as a producer. So when Action Replay was announced there was huge curiosity in the trade circle and even the industry tried to forget Vipul's last movie 'London Dreams' which had made below average box office collections. After Raavan this was another flop for Aishwarya and it also hit Akshay's already staggering career badly.
RAKTCHARITRA 1 & 2: Ram Gopal Varma was one of the most respected names in the trade circles and he also spelt box office success however in the last few years apart from the SARKAR series he didn't strike gold at the box office. RGV tried resurrecting his career with Raktacharitra however instead of resurrecting the careers of both RGV and Vivek Oberoi it added onto their basket of flops. Another disaster from the RGV 'Factory'.

ANJAANA ANJAANI: There is still a debate on the box office status of Sajid Nadiadwala's Anjaana Anjaani starring current heart throb Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra. Sajid Nadiadwala and Siddharth Anand always spelt box office success before they teamed up for Anjaana Anjaani. However their combined luck factor didn't help the movie to recover its costs. If box office returns are to be calculated the movie is a flop however if the satellite and music rights collections are counted then its a profit making venture for Sajid Nadiadwala.

GUZAARISH: After the debacle of SAWAARIYA, Sanjay Leela Bhansali returned with a sensitive story about a Paraplegic patient seeking 'Mercy Killing.' Considering the story and the setup the movie shouldn't have costed SLB anything more than 10-15 crores and if he had made it at that budget the movie would have been one of the superhits of 2010. However SLB made the movie at a huge budget of 90 crores out of which his remuneration was 27 crores plus Hrithik's fees which was around 15 crores and Aishwarya's fees which was 3 crores. The movie was a huge disaster although it is one of the masterpieces made by SLB. UTV had to incurr huge losses and Aishwarya got her third flop in a row and Hrithik his second flop after Kites.

We still have not counted few movies like We R Family that came from the prestigious banner of Karan Johar's Dharma Productions or Break Ke Baad by Kunal Kohli Productions or even Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey directed by Ashutosh Gowarikar who have given us big blockbusters like 'Lagaan' & 'Jodha Akbar'.

The year is yet to end and we have the Father of all Big Budget Movies in the form of 'Tees Maar Khan' by Farah Khan starring Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif hope it is not another turkey in the waiting....

Friday, December 3, 2010

Movie Review: Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

Movies today has become a costly affair not only for the makers but also for the viewers. An average middle class person has to spend a minimum of Rs.1500/- if he has to take his family for a movie these days which includes the multiplex ticket fares as well as the popcorn-cola expenses and commuting fares. If someone has to spend such huge amount for a day of entertainment for him and his family then better the movie be worth the money being spent by him. Few days back I had heard Abhishek Bachchan professing the same sentiments that I have put forth on a leading TV channel while promoting his latest movie 'Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey'. Alas these were mere words for him and the adage 'Practice what you preach' seems to be suggested to him and the director Ashutosh Gowarikar.

'Jeelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey' is the latest offering from Ashutosh Gowarikar who tries to take us back in history and narrate a story less heard off and read about even in our school history books. JHJJS is based on a book 'Do and Die' by Manini Chatterjee inspired from the Chittagong Uprising that took place in 1930. The movie narrates the story of Surjya Sen (Abhishek Bachchan) a school teacher, spearheading a revolt with the help of his five comrades (Sikander Kher, Samrat Mukherjee, Feroz Wahid Khan, Shreyas Pandit, Maninder Singh), two feisty women (Deepika Padukone and Vishakha Singh), and 56 teenagers on the night of April 18, 1930 in Chottogram (Chittagong).

But their plan to take on the cantonment, destroy the telegraph office, cut off the rail link, confiscate the armoury and take the firangis hostage goes haywire for several reasons. Coming under retaliatory attack, the band of 62 flees into the jungles of Jalalabad where many of them are massacred by the British. One by one all the revolutionaries on the run are either gunned down or arrested and thereby ‘transported for life’ or sent to the gallows. The story is short but the director stretches the same into a 3 hour affair and so the movie seems to move ahead slowly and at times it becomes boring.

Coming to the performances, Abhishek Bachchan has done a fantastic job and so does Deepika who has donned the role of Kalpana Dutta and she even gets a chance to showcase her badminton skills in a small sequence in the movie. Rest of the cast like Sikander Kher, Vishakha Singh, Maninder Singh, Shreyas Pandit and Feroz Wahid Khan leave an impression on the minds of the viewers.

The production design [Nitin Chandrakant Desai] transports you to that era. It's that authentic. The stunts [Ravi Dewan] are true to life. Kiran Deohans and Seetha Sandhiri's cinematography captures the era to perfection. Music by Sohel Sen is just average and there are no songs that leaves any long last impression. The screenplay by Raoul V Randolf and Ashutosh Gowarikar is wonderful however the editing should have been more crisper in the second half that would have made a huge difference.

All said and done the movie is a one-time watch and the box office returns seems to be bleak as today's audience doesnt seem to favour such subjects and would rather wait for the movie to be screened on the Television rather than catch it onscreen paying huge ticket fares. Moreover the movie was not publicized well nor the posters give a feel that will generate an interest in the minds of the average movie goers to go and watch the movie. Another disaster in the making as far as box office returns is considered.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Movie Review: Break Ke Baad

Indians howsoever modern they grow their roots are still Indian and still Hindi movies with western sensibilities never work in India case in point Aisha. With Break Ke Baad Kunal Kohli gets into full time production handling the directorial baton to Danish Aslam who debuts with this movie starring Imran Khan and Deepika Padukone. Danish has tried to target the urban audience with this romantic comedy that talks about giving space in a relationship.

 The story is of Abhay [Imran Khan] and Aaliya [Deepika Padukone] who have known each other since their childhood and soon their friendship turns into love at the tender age of 15, when Abhay realizes that Aaliya is the girl for him.

Aaliya's life is defined by her burning desire to become an actress and she is unmindful of what or who comes in her way. Abhay, who is still unsure about what he wants to do, finds himself competing with Aaliya's incessant plans and projects to fulfill her dreams. Things come to a head when Aaliya decides to go to Australia to study and Abhay has to deal with the prospect of a long-distance relationship, secretly fearing that he will lose Aaliya forever.

They decide to give their relationship a break, so that Aaliya can pursue her dreams. As time passes by, Abhay realises his skills, while Aaliya realises that there is no joy in achieving one's dreams if one has no one to share it with. 

On the outer premise the story looks interesting however the screenplay by Renuka and Danish falls flat. Moreover Deepika's character seems to be a confused person and keeps on breaking the relationship then makes up and then breaks up and finally gets married to Imran's character. The songs are average apart from 'Adhoore', 'Meri Padosan' and 'Dooriyan'. Danish handles few scenes well while Imran and Deepika have acted well. Sharmila Tagore and Shahana Goswami are totally wasted and Lillette Dubey does a good job.

On the whole Break Ke Baad disappoints majorly. I am sure audience will never return after the interval or 'Break Ke Baad' to the theatres. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Magician Named : Sanjay Leela Bhansali

When I was in my teens a magician cast his spell on me through his movie 'Khamoshi - The Musical' since then till today I was not able to break away from the spell, although I was jolted very hard to come out of his magical spell with his last outing named 'Saawariya'.

Sanjay Leela Bhansali movies have always been a celebration for most us, howsoever anyone would like to hate him or love him, and one can never ignore him. Khamoshi was very special to me as it was for the first time I could see my favourite stars together and also see my favourite Salman Khan act for a change and so did Manisha who gave her career best. Although she won a Filmfare award for her performance she missed out on her National Award due to uncertain circumstances. The movie did not do well at the box office but it is termed as a classic today. The songs are still hummed and they are one of the best albums from music composers Jatin-Lalit.

Then Sanjay took a ‘U’ turn and directed two full on masala entertainers with popular music and lavish sets and costumes. Both Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and Devdas were the biggest hits of those years and also bagged all the major awards at every awards function. Aishwarya Rai looked her best and also acted her best in both movies. Who can forget Paro and Nandini portrayed by Aishwarya and who can forget Madhuri's mesmerizing portrayal of the courtesan Chandramukhi in Devdas? Sanjay not only gave a fresh lease to the careers of Aishwarya Rai and Ajay Devgan but also gave us a talented music director in the form of Ismail Darbar.

After proving his mettle with HDDCS and Devdas he once again turned towards a genre he loves to make - BLACK. Black is considered to be a career milestone for him as well as Amitabh Bachchan who got his third National Award for the movie and also for Rani Mukherjee who won both the critics and popular Filmfare award alongwith all the other hordes of awards. Who can forget the brilliant performances of AB, Rani, Shernaaz Patel and Ayesha Kapoor who played the younger version of Rani in the movie? The movie was a critical and commercial success. There were no songs in the movie but the content was so strong it struck a chord in every viewer’s heart. Black again took all the major awards alongwith the best actor and actress for the year 2005 and established brand SLB.

When someone is on a higher trail and in a respectable position like SLB, then he is closely watched by the industrywallahs to make one mistake so that they can pull him down and that's what happened with Saawariya. Saawariya was the most sought after project when it was announced. It starred Rishi Kapoor and Anil Kapoor's children, a big launch pad for them as well as for the music director Monty and singer Shail Hada. Sony pictures backed the project all positives but when the movie released it was torn apart by the critics and it was a huge box office failure. SLB was made the butt of every joke and soon he was written off by the same people who hailed him and worshiped him as GOD.

 To regain everything he lost, he spun his magic again in the form of Guzaarish, one of the best movies to hit the silver screen in a long time and also the best by SLB. It is a masterpiece made by SLB and for the first time in the last 10 years Aishwarya Rai was not Aishwarya Rai but Sophia the nurse who takes care of Ethan played by Hrithik, the magician suffering from paraplegia for the past 14 years. The performances are praiseworthy and also award worthy. The cinematography, the background music, the songs, the dialogues everything related to Guzaarish is just out of the world. The magician in SLB who had taken a sabbatical resurfaced to cast his spell once again. 

A grand salute to you Sanjay and once again I am under your spell and waiting to see more objects popping out of your magician's hat (his brain).

Monday, November 22, 2010

Reality Television in India - A Mockery

A teenager starts breaking his dressing table mirror then he rushes into his bathroom and breaks everything that comes in his way. A girl getting beaten up by her boyfriend and someone hurling the choicest of abuses on another person and trying to physically assault the other person. These are few common things we would have noticed in the last few weeks on television in the name of Reality Television.

Reality shows in India has grown by leaps and bounds. After the deluge of Saas-bahu serials every other channel started showcasing reality shows after KBC, Indian Idol, Saregamapa on Zee TV and MTV Roadies caught on. However the reality shows are mocking the real essence of reality television. You can see that every show is clearly scripted and the characters are just acting it out whether it is Dolly Bindra fighting with her fellow contestants in the Bigg Boss House or  boyfriends cheating on their girlfriends or vice versa on Emotional Atyachar. You can clearly see the participants are acting out in front of the camera.
In today’s world where TRP plays a huge role, every television channel is going out of its way by introducing such cheap tactics in the name of Reality shows in order to garner more advertisers for the shows and for them.  So you can see mock fights between judges and contestants of the talent shows, contestants hurling choicest of bad words at their fellow contestants, insulting eachother and opening showing sleaze courtesy Emotional Atyachar.

Today's audience is intelligent enough to understand that the fights are staged however they watch it for sheer fun. However to upsurge one another every channel is resorting to cheaper tactics e.g. Dolly Bindra creating havoc at the Bigg Boss house and swearing badly at fellow contestants at the drop of a hat. Rakhi Sawant insulting her guests in front of her audience which also gave way to one of the guests committing suicide. Sach Ka Saamna, where the darker and dirtier secrets were revealed by the contestants to the host of the show. Bindass Dadagiri where contestants were asked to insult eachother and one of the contestants slapped the host in retaliation etc

In today’s age where violence is a common factor in our everyday life these channels are encouraging youngsters to resort to it so that they can get their few seconds of stardom. These shows not only are bad content wise but also make a very bad impression on the young minds who think that to become famous the best way is to resort to violence, disregard relationships and become a reality TV star. Television has a responsibility towards the society and with such irresponsible behaviour they are setting wrong examples to our today’s youth. The I & B Ministries resolve on telecasting such shows between 11:00 pm – 5:00a.m. is a welcome change however is this the only way we can discourage such shows? Maybe sensible viewers like us need to take a call.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Review: Guzaarish

 Sanjay Leela Bhansali is a name that is associated with quality cinema and his stories always strike a chord with its viewers except Saawariya which didn't make any sense nor did it justify to the tremendous potential of SLB. The latest offering from SLB's creative studio is 'Guzaarish' a soul stirring story about a Paraplegia stricken patient. Paraplegia is a complete paralysis of the lower half of the body, including both legs, usually caused by damage/injury to the spinal cord. You can draw many parallels from films like Whose Life is it Anyways or even The Sea Inside but SLB gives a master touch of his own and churns out a beautiful tale that celebrates life. I also would like to inform you that it is no where inspired or copied from Christopher Nolan's The Prestige as reported by many newspapers in the past.

The story is set in Goa and it tells the story of Ethan Mascarehas (Hrithik) who is an accomplished magician and during one of his stage performances he becomes a victim of his own magic and suffers serious injuries turning him into a Paraplegic patient. His world is surrounded by few people, Sophia - his nurse (Aishwarya), Devyani - his lawyer (Shernaz Patel) and Dr. Nitin Naik his physician (Suhel Seth). Ethan  who is confined to a wheel chair, becomes a Radio Jockey at an FM Station called Radio Zindagi. His show talks of hope, laughter and sunshine and it's difficult to imagine that the man behind it has been immobilized with a spinal injury for the last fourteen years of his life. Ethan files a petition in court for mercy killing. This decision of Ethan leaves Sofia stunned as she shares a silent love with Ethan. 

Ethan takes the help of friend-lawyer Devyani [Shernaz Patel] to support his appeal. Even Ethan's mother Isabel [Nafisa Ali] supports him in his petition, although Ethan is persuaded by his physician Dr. Nayak [Suhel Seth] to retract his case. Alongside all this, Omar [Aditya Roy Kapur] enters Ethan's life with the aim of learning magic from him. Impressed by Omar's love for magic, Ethan agrees to pass on his legacy to him.

There are few prominent scenes that will leave you emotional and teary eyed, especially the court room scenes, Aishwarya's outburst in the court, the hearing of the petition, the climax etc... 

Performances are the highlight of this movie. Hrithik fits into the character of Ethan easily and you cannot imagine anyone other than him performing that role. Aishwarya is topnotch after a long time. Shernaz Patel, Aditya Roy Kapur, Nafisa Ali and Suhel Seth are very good. Newcomer Monikangana Dutta has very little to do in the movie. On a lighter note SLB even makes the fly act well in the movie.

Music by SLB is not a chart-busting fare, however the lyrics and the soulful songs transport you to a different world especially the title song and Tera Zikr. The costumers are good, the back ground score by Tubby and Parik are subtle and very effective as it goes with the mood of the movie, the cinematography by Sudeep Chaterjee is wonderful and the dialogues by Vibhu Puri and Bhavani Iyer is heart touching.

The hindarances to the wonderful movie is its pace and heavy dosage of English dialogues that will limit the movie's performance in the single screens and will only cater to the class audiences. Overall the movie is an emotional fare and might not do huge business at the box office but will reap all the major awards.